Content Aware Studies

Initial stage of the Content Aware Studies project is devoted to reconstruction of friezes and sculptures from the period of classical Antiquity involving A.I and machine learning technology in particular.

Based on the precise 3d-scan of the original sculpture, the algorithm analyses thousands of 3d-scans of objects of classical antiquity to generate models of the missing fragments, as well as never existed sculptures of that era. These speculative generated missing fragments will be 3d-printed from synthetic polymers and integrated into the marble replica of the original sculpture.

The project juxtaposes the aesthetics of classical ancient art and the generative method, explores the mechanisation of artistic labour, new forms of material cultures and quasi-archeology. The artist explores the possibility of a collaboration with artificial intelligence, potentiality of it’s synthetic subjectiveness and the meta-archaeological form of the history production, it’s ethical implications, thereby calling into questioning the ideas of ​​authorship, genuinity and production of art and history in their traditional sense.

'Open Codes’, ZKM, Karlsruhe, Germany, 2018

CAS_07 Telephos Frieze; Botticino Marble; Machine Learning Algorythms; Dimensions: 56x67x17cm

Courtesy of the author

The project initiates an inquiry into the possibilities of AI and Machine Learning to reconstruct and generate lost antique greek and roman friezes and sculptures based on the analysis of custom-compiled dataset of thousands 3D scans. It concerns about the potentialities of methods involving data, ML, AI and other forms of automations turning into semi- and quasi–archeological knowledge production and interpretations of history and culture in the era of ubiquitous computation. Synthetic intelligence capable of self-learning is directed to replenish lost fragments of the sculptures. Based on an analysis of models, it generates models, which are then 3D printed in various 

materials and used to fill the voids of the original sculptures. The project juxtaposes the aesthetics of classical ancient art and the generative method, explores the mechanisation of artistic labour and new forms of material cultures. The artist explores the possibility of a collaboration with artificial intelligence, potentialities of involving it’s synthetic subjectiveness and the data-driven form of the history production, it’s ethical implications, thereby calling into questioning the ideas of authorship, genuinity and production of art and history in their traditional sense.

Materiality has reappeared as a highly contested topic in recent art. Modernist criticism tended to privilege form over matter—considering material as the essentialized basis of medium specificity—and technically based approaches in art history reinforced connoisseurship through the science of artistic materials. But in order to engage critically with materiality in the post-digital era, the time of big data and automation, we may need a very different set of methodological tools. We may need to address digital infrastructures as entirely physical and to reexamine the notion of “dematerialization”, by addressing materialist critiques of artistic production, surveying relationships between matter and bodies, exploring the vitality of substances; and looking closely at the concepts of intermateriality and transmateriality emerging in the hybrid zones of digital experimentation. Content Aware Studies aims to study of the role of materiality as an agent itself forming critical

approach in Art today, expanding on the concepts of heritage, time, process and participation of both the viewer and the creator. It ponders upon how materials confront, violate or interfere with the common standards being mediators in processes that are not yet completely understood. It questions methods of preservation and reconstruction along with new challenges in those fields posed by automation and synthetic intelligence. Importantly the project aims to examine and physically embody both interpretations and bizarre misinterpretations of human anatomies and antique subjects through the lense of machine vision, synthetic cognition and sensation. What visual and aesthetic qualities for such guises would they convey when perceived through our humancentric lens? And what of our historical knowledge and mythology/interpretation, encoded into the aesthetics of the datasets will survive this digital digestion?

CAS_08 Hellenistic Ruler
2018

Marble, Polyamide; Machine Learning Algorithms Dimensions: 19x26x21;
Courtesy of the author & Anna Nova Gallery

CAS_09 Colos­sal head of Her­cules
2018 

Mar­ble, Polyamide; Ma­chine Learn­ing Al­go­rithms Di­men­sions: 24x32x20
Cour­tesy of the au­thor & Anna Nova Gallery

CAS_10 Telephos Drapery; 2018 Carrera marble, Machine Learning Algorithms; Dimensions: 60x40x14cm;
Courtesy of the author & Anna Nova Gallery

Marble frieze preciesly based on machine learning outputs of a model trained on datasets that included draperies and portraits

INNOVATION IS A METHOD 
HERMITAGE

‘Content Aware Studies’ exhibited at ’Innovation as Method’ in Hermitage museum, Saint-Petersburg, Russia, 2018

 

Marble, polyamide, machine learning algorithms, 3D scanning, 3D printing, video installation

Technical and artistic assistance: Matthew Lenkiewicz
Initial Dataset and Machine Learning: Artem Konevskikh
Production Assistance: Ira Dolgaya

CAS_03 Lu­cius_Verus
2018

Car­rera Mar­ble, Polyamide, Ma­chine Learn­ing Al­go­rithms; Di­men­sions: 42x37x32cm
Cour­tesy: Ak­senov Fam­ily Foun­da­tion

CAS_04 Parthenon_­South_X­I_31
2018

Car­rera Mar­ble, Ma­chine Learn­ing Al­go­rithms Di­men­sions: 120x100x10cm
Cour­tesy of the au­thor

ÀKKTA SOLO SHOW 
ANNA NOVA

‘Won­der­ful ex­hi­bi­tion of Egor Kraft, one of the best artists work­ing with AI - Anna Nova gallery, Saint-pe­ters­burg, Rus­sia. His se­ries of sculp­tures uses ma­chine learn­ing trained on real cla­si­cal sculp­tures miss­ing some parts. The net­works re­con­structs these parts re­sult­ing in de­light­ful and friendly fan­tas­ti­cal crea­tures. The re­sults are cre­ated from real mar­ble. This meet­ing of clas­si­cal high cul­ture and lat­est tech­nolo­gies is one of the things mak­ing this work unique.’

 Lev Manovich

au­thor of books on new me­dia the­ory, pro­fes­sor of Com­puter Sci­ence at the City Uni­ver­sity of New York, Grad­u­ate Cen­ter, U.S. and vis­it­ing pro­fes­sor at Eu­ro­pean Grad­u­ate School in Saas-Fee, Switzer­land.

THE NEW STATE OF THE LIVING
 PERMM 

‘The New State of The Living’ in PERMM, Perm, Russia; 2018 Art & Science exhibition curated by Dmitry Bulatov.

Marble, polyamide, machine learning algorithms, 3D scanning, 3D printing, video installation

OPEN CODES
ZKM 

‘Open Codes’, ZKM, Karlsruhe, Germany, 2018
Curator: Peter Weibel

Marble, polyamide, machine learning algorithms, 3D scanning, 3D printing, video installation